Southern Schools Book Award 2010 Presentation Evening
January 14th 2011 marked the seventh annual Southern Schools Book Award Presentation Evening which was held again this year at Roedean School. The event was hosted by author Sophie McKenzie who won the award last year with her book Blood Ties. The 2010 shortlist was Bloodchild by Tim Bowler, Stolen by Lucy Christopher, Grass by Cathy MacPhail, Toymaker by Jeremy de Quidt and Saving Rafael by Leslie Wilson.
The evening was attended by some 250 students from 29 of the participating schools across the southern region. This year also saw pupils from the Lycée Henri Avril in Brittany travel via Portsmouth to the event.
Sophie introduced each author in turn who then spoke briefly about their book and read a short passage. Tension mounted for the readers who had cast their votes for the winning and Highly Commended books last December. Finally Sophie held the silver envelope containing the name of the Highly Commended author which was Leslie Wilson for her book Saving Rafael. The winning gold envelope was then opened to reveal the 2010 SSBA winner which was Stolen by Lucy Christopher. The news was met with enthusiastic cheers from the young readers!
The students, who had each been presented with a book token by SSBA benefactor Joolz Clothier, were able to purchase books by the authors. They were then given the opportunity to have the books signed and to speak with each of the authors and host.
Our sincere thanks go to Sophie McKenzie for being such a great host and in helping the evening to go so smoothly, all the authors for attending and being so interesting and entertaining and of course the staff and students of Roedean School for all their hard work… yet again. And finally, but very importantly, to all the young readers across the schools.